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Small Patrol Boat In Derna 1942


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Here is a picture of Derna harbor showing German S-boats camouflaged with sheets




In the lower right we can see at least one small patrol boat with a gun platform forward of the bridge





Does anyone have any further information on what this craft is? I assume it is an Italian patrol craft of some kind.


Dave G

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Well, Dave, the 3. S-Bootflottille (S 30, 36, 54 to 60) was only based in Derna for a relatively short period, from 27 May 1942 (coming in from Augusta) to 4 July 1942 (on to Marsa Matruk) (see Gerhard Huemmelchen, "Die deutschen Schnellboote im zweiten Weltkrieg", Mittler, 1996). The patrol boat you're looking for could be an AS boat, i.e. an auxiliary warship. I gather that the 13° Gruppo AntiSom based in Benghazi at 31 Oct. 1942 was made up with AS 7, 57, 82, 89, 90, 93, 111, 118 and 120 (Erminio Bagnasco and Franco Bargoni, "Cacciasommergibili", in "Storia Militare" n. 192, Sept. 2009). AS 7 COTUGNO was a former Regia Guardia di Finanza motovedetta of 61 tons, which could fit what little can be seen of your patrol boat. That's just a suggestion, however.

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